tv Washington Journal CSPAN November 15, 2013 7:00am-9:01am EST
conversation on facebook or twitter as well. us.can always e-mail new york times. obama proposal worries insurers and regulators. obama tries to quite a political uproar by suggesting on thursday that consumers can keep their current health care. he said they had not been consulted in advance about the proposal. might seriously damage the new insurance marketplace. after the insurance announce the changes, insurance regulators participated in a heated conference call where many
expressed deep unhappiness about the proposal. some felt the president threw them under the bus on the condition -- after the insurance announce -- some felt the president threw them under the bus. it may lead to market disruptions, said the president of the national association of insurance commissioners. 9:00ouse is coming in at to debate keeping your health care. a formal house issued veto threat of a bill offered by house republicans that would allow insurance companies to continue offering health plans that existed before the
beginning of the new year. upton, ansored by fred republican of michigan. it is coming up for a vote today. what is in this bill? what does this bill do? basically extend the existing health plans that are going to be canceled. it would allow people to buy into new health plans in the individual market, which has all of these rules that are supposed to be going out of effect after obamacare goes into place next year. it would create to insurance markets, one where you might have the younger and healthier going to these existing plans. it would do some pretty big damage to the exchanges and that's why the administration opposes and so forcefully. host: your colleagues have an article in your paper. in a crass likely to back me obama care bill.
democrats not likely to back the obamacare will. the white house came out with a fix that may have been more political. it has given them some cover. where it might have had 100 democrats might have voted for this upton bill, my colleagues are reporting it might be just 25 or 30. host: what would be the policy effective this bill went through and if the senate passed it? ? i do not think you will see the senate pass it. would create to insurance markets. the old one that obamacare was supposed to eliminate where insurance companies could charge you if you have pre-existing conditions. the idea that if you have a catastrophic illness, you will
not have great coverage. if idea of obamacare is that you get sick, you have a safety net. it is better consumer protections. more. cost that is the drawback. host: thank you for your time this morning. front page of the wall street journal. obama retreats on health rules. caughtd story, insurers offguard by policy reversal. post, how washington will obama's plan to on cancel ncancel insurance plans work? before president obama's announcement, any insurance plan offered after january 1 had to comply with new requirements in the health care law, including covering essential benefits such
as maternity care, accepting all consumers and not charging people higher rates if they have a pre-existing condition. let's say you had an insurance plan in april 2013 that did not cover maternity care, you would have bought a one-year contract that ran into who -- into 2014. plan heot renew your cause it does not meet the health care law requirement to --er certain but in fits certain benefits. what obama did was not to force insurance openings to keep offering their products. that would be difficult and possibly illegal. health carriers take products on and off of markets all the time. the president is getting to key players to -- the opportunity to make important decisions. regulatorssurance the opportunity to sell plans
that they were not previously allowed to sell. four democrats. 202-585-3881 formrepublicans and 202-585-3882 by independent -- for independents. brian is a democrat in michigan. brian, you are on the "washington journal." caller: i am pretty sure what the president did was legal and constitutional. it is well within his duty to execute the law, which is his job as the chief executive. the veracity and the truth of his statements in the last few years have been proven time after time.
i am getting sick and tired of hearing republicans talking president lying. republicans lie all the time. they lie when they open their mouth. that is the way it works. host: here is tom on our independent line. tom. it is a little convenient that we have been talking about the exact problems and the aca for months years. conservatives and tea party types have been on the radio. the president said he refused to negotiate how much he would not negotiate with ted cruz and mike lee. he shut the government down over it. with six months left in the year, he decides that he needs to do something. he revealed himself as a real hack. he abdicated any responsibility had for this.
host: inside usa today. there is a picture of the head of america's health insurance plans, the insurers group. the insurance company is not pleased that the onus is on them to satisfy consumers who are outraged about policies being canceled. insurers do not have to let people extend their plans. it will no longer be implementation of the law that is forcing them to buy a new plan. head of the insurance company trade group said extensions could lead to higher premiums, the effect obama's announcement was intended to prevent. it could destabilize the market and result in higher premiums for consumers." the head of america's health nce plans said in a
statement. caller: i have to hand it to the republic is. too not know how they do it get people to vote against their own interests. it is amazing to me how these republicans can get out here and bash obamacare and lie about it and lie about it knowing that it and the website is going to be repaired. it is going to be repaired on time, this month. holding these senators these different hearings, the congress holding these different tensngs trying to create to pretend they are for obama
care when they are trying to do sure yet. host: executive authority crust tunes -- questions raised. he tried an end around around congress taming unilateral authority to let companies continue to offer health care plans under obamacare. the move drew howls of disapproval from republicans and ignited a debate over whether esther obama has the executive authority that he is claiming. mr. obama has the executive authority he is claiming. here is a little bit from president obama. [video clip] they may be losing the plans offered in the individual market --ause they do not need the
qualifications. i understand why this is upsetting, especially after assurances from me that if they had a plan they liked, they can keep it. i hear you loud and clear. i said i would do everything i can to fix this problem. today i am offering an idea to do it. people who have plans that predate the affordable care act can keep those lands if they have not changed. .hat was already in the law it is called a grandfather clause. today, we will extend that principle to people who have plans that have changed and people who have bought plan since the law took effect. insurance commissioners can decide what plans can and cannot be sold in their states. insurers can extend current
plans that would otherwise be canceled into 2014 and americans whose plans would be canceled can choose to reenroll in the same kind of plan. host: here is what speaker john say about the president's proposal. the president is asking americans to trust him once again. this is little more than a political response designed to shift blame rather than solve the problem. paperedblem cannot be over by another regime of washington regulations. bob is a republican from tennessee. bob, you are on "washington journal." speaker john boehner is correct in his statement. this president is less, the worst president since jimmy carter. have?is that all you
i am not done. i would like to finish. this president is lula's. all he does is lie. democrat -- this president is clueless. lie anddemocrats do is they are deceptive. host: in louisiana, what do you think about the proposed fixes to the affordable care act? caller: it is laughable. i have the biggest mess ever seen. i am 65 years old. this is the biggest mess i have seen coming out of washington, d c -- washington, d.c.? when you havepect a pseudo-intellectual and a bunch of chicago street loves
running washington? we will spend hundreds of billions of dollars and we will not be getting any thing. host: thanks for your call. -- white house chief of staff denis mcdonough was on and with a powerpoint .roposal the white house chief of staff might have been better off revealing a u.s. map of the president's plan for saving congressional democrats' seats for lettinggy democrats walked out in public and repeat wildly inaccurate white house claims about the health of the enrollment website.
from the hill newspaper this morning, the president under fire for skirting congress. critics are jumping on president obama for unilaterally delaying requirements for obamacare. the action marks the second time this year the a administration has used executive power for putting off controversial provisions of the health care law. chris is a democrat in new york. hi, chris. caller: how are you doing? talking about president obama lying, congress has been lying about the aca for how long now? they want to do anything that hurts americans. that is what they are doing. i have medical. i bought medical. my wife has a pre-existing condition. do you know what our copayments
are, $1500. i went to get my medicine and they only cover for two weeks. i am taking five medications. host: with all of that information, what would you like to see done? caller: i would like to see the aca keep going. there are so many sick people. everybody has some kind of condition. we all need help. everybody is saying, i would rather pay for my medical. i have no problem paying, but cover my conditions. i have insurance. my co-pay is $6,000. host: thank you for calling in. landrieu, a democrat of louisiana filed to move forward with a bill to help people deep their existing
health plans. she says she thought her bill was necessary despite president obama's announcement there's they that he would lose executive powers to allow insurance companies to offer canceled plans for another year. the plan should be kept, landrieu said. nancy pelosi held a press conference yesterday. owne democrats have their obamacare plan. they are hoping to vote on their masslan to address the cancellations. she called it a belt and suspenders approach. it is not intended to compete with the administrative approach offered by barack obama on thursday. she says she thinks it will come up in the next 24, 48 hours. here is a little bit from nancy pelosi.
[video clip] graciousesident was and making an apology. i agree with mr. hoyer. what the president said about the affordable care act is absolutely so. there is nothing that said your insurance company should cancel you. that is not what the affordable care act is about. constituentsll my that if they like their plan iey could keep it that go would have if i had ever met anybody who like their plan. that was not my experience and it was not my experience as a mother of five who occasionally has a bad back. i was considered a poor risk even though i had i wasesources and thought white strong from having five children. but the insurance company did not see it that way. peopleot run into many
who said i love my health insurance policy. host: here is how the resident's announcement is playing across the country. herald, firsti aid for obama care. the denver post, reversal on canceled health care plans draws fire. here is the boston globe. obama yields on the low -- on below par insurance. the detroit free press. health care chaos. in brooklyn, a republican. good morning. caller: good morning. how are you this morning? i wanted to let out a few words. the presidente did not do this for the american citizens. he did this for the democratic party when their voting comes up in 2014. he has not been fair to the
american people. what he does he does for himself and acknowledgment for himself. he is not looking around the world to see what he does and how it affects all of us. i truly believe that if we are going to take a president, he should have at least been in the service, not the war, but the service, to see how our country is run. page of the washington times. administration changed its tune. president obama vowed that lobbyists would have no lays in his administration. there was a $500 million grant to help enroll people for obama care as navigators.
the grant was given to chapman llc, which has filed disclosure forms that hit -- that it on the health care law itself. a legislative representative for the watch route -- watchdog citizen says it is unusual for a lobbying firm to get a government contract but the company may have won the grant because of its grassroots work. caller: i think it is a joke. i am an independent for a reason. i look at the overall picture in the united states. veteran, itnam divide andk of conquer. if you can divide your enemies, you can conquer them.
i thank you c-span for letting americans the americans. would love to see someone up there in washington dc -- washington, d.c. pass a bill that states whenever any theident on the way down to audited beforee they go into office and after they go into office. if they have an offshore account, also include that. one more suggestion for the people of the young states, which i love. i would love to see dr. ben carson run for president and colonel allen west be his vice president. would love to see someone get into office who does not have any ties to all of these people. host: thank you.
eugene robinson and his column in the washington post. resolute.ut also it was a necessary retreat. said his bottom line remains unchanged. i will not walk away from 40 million people who have the chance to get health insurance for the first time. obama surrendered to overwhelming pressure, much of it from fellow immigrants, and allowed people to keep their bare-bones insurance policies -- and allowedrats, people to keep their bare-bones insurance policies. more people are being annoyed and inconvenienced by the new law and are being held. it should be the other way around. obama accepted the blame. "i thought we were slapped around unjustly. this time it is on us. -- this time it is on us.
c" --by is from the insurance for the-- lobbyists insurance companies say rates will have to increase for everyone else. in the long term or the medium- less pessimistic than most people, eugene robinson writes. realigns incentives in the system. given a bit of time and space i am confident it will work. those who say otherwise are going to end up being not accurate. that is eugene robinson's column. --e is girls krauthammer
charles krauthammer's column. why liberals are panicked about obama care. obamacare is wholly owned by the democrats. and wouldveling catastrophically undermined their underlying ideology of expansiveding -- ever central government providing cradle to grave care for and ever grateful citizenry. it began with the bundled -- bungled rollout. how does it propose to regulate the vast ecosystem of american medicine? beyond the competence issue is the arrogance. renewed healthy care plans are canceled because they do not meet some arbitrary standard set i experts in
washington. for all of his news conference gyrations about not deliberately deceiving people with this if obamake it promise, allows you to keep your plan only if he likes it. this is life imitating comedy. -- that old line about a liberal not caring what you do as long as it is mandatory. helena is on our line for democrats. is my second time calling in. i am so upset with so many ignorant people calling your show. from tennessee, louisiana, new york. they are talking about our president and i really do not like it. this man has been trying to be there for the american people. all the gop does is come on your program and lied, lied, lied.
for have not done anything us. host: what do you think about the proposed changes for the affordable care act? caller: it is going to work people. people have to give it a chance to work. my husband was in a vegetative state. they were going to drop him after two years. his medicare kicked in. this is what insurance companies are doing. .hey have done it for years your premiums go up with this old plan. this man is trying to make it affordable for us and for everyone. it is going to work. try toce companies sabotage what this man has done. host: thank you for calling in. harry is in pittsburgh, a republican.
remarks.wo quick obamacare,this with they have proven themselves to be liars and idiots. call ando make a phone i cannot even get through. my insurance is going to go up if i can get it. liable did yesterday is to throw me right off of insurance. these people are calling in saying i wonderful -- how wonderful it is. he makes nixon look like abraham lincoln and he makes jimmy carter look like a brain surgeon. host: quite a conversation going on on facebook. harold says, too late. this is the biggest mess america has ever been in. wagesays, i make minimum
and the government wants me to for a0 seven dollars broken plan. this is craziness. -- $147 for a broken clan. christian says, hindsight is 20- 20. it is incredible how the democratic party rammed this flawed law through. angie is and montgomery, alabama on our independent line. caller: i want people to listen carefully to what i am about to say. i was in the middle of getting my second masters degree that my out on went on -- went me. they kept telling me it was acid reflux. -- theyt telling me
kept giving me medicine and it did not work. my kidneys were gone. the doctors did not want to work on me before i got some kind of insurance. the point of what you think of the proposed fixes. caller: no matter what the president does, they are going to criticize him erie it he is trying -- they are going to criticize him. him.are going to criticize he is trying to help. host: have you gone on to the site? caller: i have because i have kids. it is probably going to take more time. i could not get on. they say december the first is the date.
host: thanks for calling him this morning. james in virginia, a democrat. you for having me this morning. i am concerned about the american people. it is not all the american people, but mostly the gop. on this insurance thing, the insurers have thrown the president under the bus. they are the ones who canceled the insurance policies. they could have included the new conditions to protect the american people. they chose to cancel the insurance and throw the resident under the bus. thead to take some -- throw president under the bus. he is saying, i will leave it up to the state insurance regulators to make the decision on whether they will cancel the insurance or go ahead and give
people new insurance. he put the ball rack into their back intohought -- their court. i thought that was smart on their part. we cannot trust the insurers. ng tons ofbeen givi dollars to the gop while they were writing the policy. they do not want americans to have cheap insurance. byy know they can divide us doing what they are doing. gop, who are calling and complaining, they are so disingenuous because they have insurance and they do not want other people to have insurance. host: thank you very much. confidence as problems pile up for the obama presidency. a picture of the president when he was in cleveland talking about during yesterday. in the wall street journal is
this tart showing how many art showing how many people have had their policies canceled. .otice some of the big states california, nine hundred thousand. florida, 300,000. 250,000 in pennsylvania. industrial newspaper, obama fails to calm jittery democrats. you can see how many democrats vote for the keep your health plan at sponsored by fred upton. the washington post editorial. the president house bubbling fix. his poll rating have fixed -- have slipped and health care
reform is in danger. obama forthrightly accepted blame and offer two ways to repair the damage. one is crucial and the other is misguided. big announcement was a fix to the affordable care act and to redeem his promise that if you like your health care plan you can keep it. unfortunately, it was his promise that was wrong and not the design of the law. at that, his proposed fix will have little impact except to let him shift the blame. it will undermine reform. this is how they conclude their editorial. the chief and only advantage of the proposal is that it is not as bad as the fix is being floated by tenant democrats and ckedting -- floated by pani democrats and gloating republicans. president obama had come up with
a modest fix. his wrong assertion that americans would be able to keep their health coverage if they liked it very of his fix is far preferable to a destructive republican bill that is expected to come up for a vote in the house on friday and to a senate bill sponsored by some demo rats. -- bills a few sponsored by some democrats. finally, the wall street journal also has an editorial on this issue. the obamacare non-fix. it is defensive politics. emma kratz needed some political cover against the daily democratsdemocrat -- needed some political cover
against the daily headlines about canceled policies. democrats tamped the law through congress on a partisan vote and against public opinion. refused step, obama has to compromise or change the law. even with this tactical retreat, he is trying to find a way to relieve the political pressure long enough to avoid having to work with congress on a larger improvement. steve and virginia on our republican line. you are on the "washington journal." what do you think about these proposed fixes? going tohey are not work. they are trying to print money to cover up their corruption and incompetence. every man, woman, and child a $5,000 credit card
that will be activated the minute you get a cold. then if somebody's catastrophic plan cannot be funded with that go to your congressional district and have more money loaded onto it. it will give every man, woman, and child in this country a health-care savings account. it would be their responsibility to look after their own needs. we would start treating people like adults instead of a bunch of children. democrats do not -- do not believe in treating people like children. tweets.ts of treat -- here is a slew of them.
where does obama get the authority to change laws? says, how can the white house make changes to the law without an act of congress? how many have actually read the fix to the bill. will this only make things worse? president trying to provide cover for geo--- cover for democrats -- president trying to revive cover for democrats. there are some other articles in the paper we want to get to on related to health care that you might find of interest. the front page of the new york times. a pink artifact of glamour and blood. husband's blood,
jackie kennedy refused all suggestions made that she cleaned herself up. she said, let them see what they have done. the most famous artifacts from that day, the most recognizable articles of clothing ever worn has been seen by almost no one. now preserved by the national archives in a climate controlled vault outside of washington. kennedy family restrictions that it not be seen for almost a century more. it is a little from the new york times front-page article on that famous stress that jackie kennedy was wearing. that jackie kennedy was wearing. front-page. databases building a of international money transfers that includes millions of americans' financial data. program, which collects
information from u.s. money transfer companies, was carried out under the same provision of the patriot act that enables the nsa to collect phone records. like the nsa program, the mass collection of financial transactions authorized by a secret national security court, the foreign intelligence surveillance court. a taste of what is in that article this morning. next call on health care and the proposed changes to the aca islauri -- is lauria in virginia. virginia.in caller: i tell you to head over to fairfax and you will see what that $5,000 gets you. it gets you one x-ray and a tylenol. that was a good suggestion. i agree with james who called in earlier.
you can blame obama. but at the end of the day, it is the insurance companies. the insurance companies are not your friend. you are a transaction to them. your doctor is not your friend. if he is not getting paid, he is not going to see you. people need to get off of this saying about, my insurance company. it is not your insurance company. you are a transaction. we need to cover everyone. like the other woman said, you have to take yourself out of it and stop being selfish. at the end of the day, everybody on this call is going to be sick. i do not care how much -- how many vitamins you take. you will need health care. when you walk into a hospital and you do not have health care, you will have a dell and you will pay it or you will go into default -- you will have a bill
and you will pay it or you will go into default and you will on your house. i give obama and the administration a lot of credit. i believe once the website is up and going, you will start to see a lot more people and a lot more insurance companies and organizations and employers get on board with it. host: thanks for calling in and thanks for watching. morenment asked google for data. the second half of 2009, the numbereddater requests 3500. the first half of this year, that number had risen to 10,000. google has offered a detailed of the kinds of ,equests received
distinguishing among wiretaps, pen registers. here is an article in the new york times. prepares to turn a page and print others. he is ready to talk about his life after baseball. he wants to be a book publisher. he announced he would start a publishing imprint, jeter publishing, a partnership with simon & schuster. he thought a lot about his future while recovering from injuries. combines his interest in books, film, and tv. the publisher will include nonfiction books like i have a business andes on lifestyle, children's victor books, middle grade fiction. in other news, fighting with
google. google's idea to scan millions of books and make them searchable online seemed on -- seemed audacious when it was announced in 2004. fast forward today when people expect to find almost anything they want online. when a judge on thursday dismissed a lawsuit that authors have filed against google after countless delays, it had the whiff of inevitability. judge said his law clerks used google for research. emily in wisconsin, a democrat. affordable care act proposed changes. what is your thought? i am a first-time caller
and i want to thank c-span. my niece died when she was 48 years old. she could not afford to go to the doctor. he would pay for her chest x-ray and she died the month later. these insurance policies that people are fighting for, they do not realize that when they get sick, they will not be worth anything. i think president obama should have stuck to his guns. they should not be allowed to have these junk policies. it is going to happen to other people. buyer beware. when you buy this junk, that is exactly what you get. host: thank you for calling in. a couple more articles before we wrap up this first section of the washington -- of the
"washington journal." tsa profiling yet to nab a terrorist. here is the new york times. groups mobilized to aid democrats in 2014 data arms race. george soros is giving money to democrats. millioncle says $122 was spent by a group, americans for prosperity, sponsored by the koch brothers. there is an article in the washington post by former first lady laura bush on afghan women. and a full page ad, live interview on tuesday, november 19, with the president.
you can watch the live stream of this november 19 interview at wsj.com. our next call comes from wisconsin. good morning. keep thinking about nancy pelosi's comment and she said let's pass this bill so we can find out what is in it. all of this about the republicans wanting to postpone things. it would have been a smart move. they would have had more chances to get the website going. all he is doing is he is going to hurt people because they will be dropped from their current for graham. his plan has backfired. host: thank you for calling in this morning. we are going to continue this conversation with two members of
congress. rris is a republican from maryland. in is a democrat from michigan. up next, andy harris. >> this weekend on c-span, wrote to the white house 2016. maryland governor martin ,'malley from manchester followed by congressman paul ryan. he had a birthday party fundraiser. governor o'malley is live
starting saturday at 7 p.m. eastern. ," here from winners of the -- finalist for the national book award for fiction. i started with teddy roosevelt. i knew so much has been written about him that i needed another story. i got into taft knowing he had been friends and they had broken apart in 1912. i figured out what was the difference between their leadership. i started reading about the progressive era and the public and the magazines and the press. these guys stood at the center of it. even the best historians will say, these people were the vanguard of the progressive movement. williambout will him -- allen white.
>> roosevelt, taft, and the muckrakers sunday night with doris kearns goodwin sunday night on c-span's "q & a." >> "washington journal" continues. host: representative harris, how are you going to vote today on the fred upton bill, keep your health care? guest: i will vote for the build. in order to incentivize the insurance companies, it opens up -- opens it up to people who want to purchase plans as a new purchase. i do not think insurance companies will take the time and effort to rewrite those policies.
host: there is a lot of pushback from insurance regulators saying they were unaware this was going to happen and they were planning for this law to go into effect. guests then only a small number of people will be helped by what the president did yesterday. even with the added incentives, it will add new customers. there is no time. there is -- it is too little, too late. some are saying it will gut obamacare. if it will allow people to keep their plans -- i do not think that is likely -- it will help the calculations in the exchange. this plan is fundamentally flawed. we are learning about the fundamental flaws. it may be too late to change many of those flaws.
host: what has been your experience working with insurance companies? companies arece not the nicest people to work with. they have always been better to work with than the government payers. they have no responsibility to anyone. iner medicare, physicians this country have not had an increase in 10 years. not even an inflation increase. that is not true with insurance companies. it is true with government payers. great expansion in medicaid under this plan. physicians are not able to take care of medicaid patients because the government does not pay them to take care of a patient. host: do you know how many people have attempted to sign up in your district on the eastern shore? guest: if you divide it among the eight districts, we may have
had 150 people signed up in my district. contrast that to 10,000 who lost their policy. host: do you know what percentage of your district is u insured -- on insured -- ninsured? have the republicans offered a viable plan to replace obamacare? 3121 is. the two things it does that are most significant is that it extends the tax credit and deductions not only that employers enjoy, but it extends it to individuals. if we buy an individual policy, we will get the same treatment as an individual them ploy or will. it allows people's -- as an
er will. l traditionally, insurance is a state regulated industry. the affordable care act transcended all of that i am posing mandatory regulations across state lines. if we can do that under the affordable care act, we should allow the purchase of insurance across state lines. i want to introduce you a little bit to our guest, currently serving in his second term. he represents the eastern shore which isaryland,
across the chesapeake bay from where we are now. he is a physician at johns hopkins. are you still a physician? guest: i am on leave, but i do practice. host: he worked at johns hopkins for many years. served as a maryland state senator and served in operation desert shield and desert storm as a doctor in the reserves. ourre going to continue conversation on proposed changes to the affordable care act beginning with beverly and columbia, missouri, a democrat. caller: i have one question. i would like to know why would h brothers be out here selling liquor to young college students to present them from
buying insurance? why would the republican party be in favor of that? by haven't they spoken up? host: are you suggesting that because of efforts against the affordable care act that these of the republicans try to prevent people from buying insurance? am.er: yes, i guest: young people do not need liquor to decide not to buy insurance. young people are the cornerstone of making the affordable care act work. they are choosing not to buy insurance. these policies are overregulated. they made the choice not to buy insurance. why would they buy it on the exchange when it is twice as expensive. on the republican
line. caller: i am a republican. my suggestion to other republicans is get out of the way. let him have what he wants. let the democrats have what a want. you think it is going to fail. i think it is going to fail. the country thinks it is going to succeed. when it fails, it will be a disaster. do not be perceived as trying to block it. fromannot stop it happening. it is a disaster. just let it happen. it will be easier to just let it and be perceived as not being blamed for it. right.you are america is beginning to believe it is not going to work. this is going to be one of the last efforts. this horse is out of the barn.
this train is barreling down the track. we need to take action to put legislative language behind the president's proposal. we have to incentivize the insurance companies to write to these policies to allow new people to sign up for these policies. a president is saying these policies are throw away policies. as carney is saying that late as a few days ago. now the resident wants to extend wants to extend these policies. we should not throw people off of insurance policies. the whole idea of affordable care to get the uninsured insured. maryland, they cancel 73,000 people. you know if you buy health insurance across state lines you
would get ripped off. guest: be rolled would be to organize the interstate regulation. regulation is going to have to occur. regulation always occurs with the sale of insurance products. people signing up for the medicaid coverage on the health insurance exchanges that it would add to our private rhenium's. -- premiums. guest: medicaid is a cost transfer. that cost is always transferred to private insurers. it will be -- the increase in the number of folks on medicaid
will do two things. it will increase the tax burden. we are finding out that a large percent, up to two thirds of the people being signed up, actually are off going to qualify for the federal government's 100% coverage. they previously qualified, they just were not signed up. we will have state, fiscal issues with it. we will have federal fiscal issues. providers not enough who see medicaid patients to take care of 10 million more people. caller: i have a question. i did not have insurance until i was in mid-40's. i did not even think about insurance, which most of my friends did not either. c-span to correct the democrats the call up and do this every day. obama lied, they believed the
lie, so they were deceived. the insurance companies, they just follow what obama told them to do. because easye off manuelual -- ezekiel finally admitted that the purpose of getting people off the insurance company so that they could come to obamacare -- the plan was for people to lose their insurance. is anyone going to confront obama in dealing with, he cannot break the law. it is a lot. is anyone going to challenge him on this? exactly why we are taking the action we are taking today. we do not believe it is a good practice. the president has used this practice before. the mechanism he proposes to -- you have to have
statute behind it. you need to attempt the stain -- to change the statute today. have the insurance companies continue them, we allow new individuals. with regard to not having insurance until he were in your --s, we have to make it in affordable for young folks to buy insurance. the way the affordable care act increasedtly and -- the premiums on young folks and that is not the way to encourage them to buy insurance. -- that income tax credit would be higher than the insurance product you would buy. host: representative harris from "the national journal" --
the bill sends a message but it is not very strong. guest: it is probably too little too late. our last stand on the affordable care act was in september, two months ago. had we done this two months ago, insurance companies probably would have had the time and state regulators would have had the time to set something up. i do think it is too little, too late. if we can help a few thousand people keep their insurance, it is probably worth the. i don't think this is going to be very expensive help. host: paul on our democrat's line. wonderingwas just what the effect of letting withe keep their old plan all of these new plants being created -- how is that going to affect the premiums in the market and the price of everything going forward? guest: that is a good question.
there are two things that happen. if we could continue -- of insurers decide to continue these plans, they will be lower prices than the exchange plans. but the exchange plan prices are fixed for the next year. it will not affect the pricing on the exchanges at all for the next year. if we allow this continue the exchange plan prices will have to go up. the fact is that most people who have individual insurance -- 73,000 in maryland -- tend to be younger and healthier. the exchanges don't work unless you can move in a large quantity , young healthy people onto those exchanges. the problem is that those policies cost more on the exchanges and that is what the letters i get -- the two major complaints are that the new replacement policy will cost a lot more. the other one is that the deductibles are much higher and
the out-of-pocket expenses. that was a characteristic of the way that the exchange plans were designed. i don't think americans are used to having a family deductible of in some cases $12,000. even with the small business plans in maryland, the out-of- pocket experiences -- expenses are going to be as much is $8,000. that is not affordable. fundamentally, the way the plants were structured, there is going to be a back lands -- backlash against this. in --jim tweets guest: i don't understand why the president doesn't like our bill. if the president wants to run the government by the president deciding which laws to enforce
and which not to enforce, that is his opinion. commerce has a different opinion. we don't think the country should be run that way. we are a co-equal branch. this legislation originated in congress, we should have the ability to change it. host: politically, does what the resident did yesterday benefit republicans? it is such an significant consequence. i don't think the insurance companies companies and the regulators have time to do this. i do think, watching the president and i watched his press conference from beginning to end, the president senses that there is a real problem with this bill. president for the coming to our opinion, tongue- in-cheek. i think it comes a little late. we said this was going to be a train wreck earlier this year. at that moment in time, the president should have come to
congress, worked with congress, asked congress for help -- real help, not just rubberstamping and saying look, what are some of the plans. maybe we could adopt some of those things. until the president does that, this is going to be a train wreck. host: next call, a republican in republican in west virginia. caller: since i have been an insurance salesman for life and health. i am a software engineer. i am a small business owner. i have a real good perspective on what is going on with this thing. -- almostteresting all of my life, i have voted republican. but the republicans in the last 10 years have become insincere
and what they're saying and i have moved away from the republican party because of that. but the thing that i would like to express about this -- about what is going on about health care is that if we were to compare the health care to car insurance. generally, car insurance is bought on an individual basis. each person buys car insurance. you don't buy generally is a group. when you group things together, like our health insurance is done through companies, each one is rated by the company. therefore, if you have a large group among let i used to work for a company, a large company, of about 20,000 employees. ranemployees -- insurance for about $400 per month. the full cost to the company for the health insurance. what we have got here is a situation that we are trying to fix this.
if we want to fix this, what we would really do is say, take the health insurance, turn it all into individual policies, then of companies wanted to pay for insurance, they could pay it as an individual policy. each individual policy -- there was a model for this -- aflac does this all the time. host: can you wrap this up? caller: if the republicans wanted to really make a change, they would examine the car insurance industry, which is been really successful. host: thank you. guest: thank you. we are very sincere. the affordable care act is not going to work. i hope that america gets the message and that is what we have been saying since we got elected in a major ordeal in 2010. you're are absolutely right, if we move towards an
individualized purchase, that will work -- as long as we structure large groups based on individual purchase which is exactly what hr 3121 does. the same income tax break to an individual that employers now get. by doing that we will encourage him people to buy insurance, we will encourage families to get individual insurance that fits their needs. we want more choice, not less choice. an e-mail from ron -- part of the problem with the system that we have built up where hospitals have to transfer cost for payment from a medicaid patient from a cash paying patients. burt --created a huge bureaucratic system that is nontransparent.
it is very difficult to figure out. all the money up a hospital spends, divided by the number of days, you get a cost. tabulated for an individual patient on an individual day, a lot of the numbers are accounting gimmicks. host: did you have a set price for the work you did as an anesthesiologist? obstetricas in anesthesiologist. i provided it at hopkins for over 20 years. i have only had one patient asked me what the cost was. we have totally insulated people from the cost of their health care. me howe person asked much is this epidural going to cost me. i would have to say tell me who your insurer is. if you are a cash paying patient, the price was the highest. it is the only industry where
few come in and pay cash, you are actually going to pay the highest price. and then it depends on what insurance company's negotiated with my group. it depends on what the negotiated with them. it was not a simple question to answer. that should be a very simple question to answer. purchase anyg to other product, the prices on the shelf or the person knows the price. totally untrue and health care. fort meade, florida. independent. caller: good morning. thanks for c-span. great program. i have a direct question. i would like to make a small statement and then i would like to ask the representative the question. my statement is this. i am in this country now 35 years. i was always a republican.
i'm now independent. the reason why is because i am pretty politically savvy and i saw what was happening wrong all the time. i have been following this obamacare and i look at every tol that was presented either defund or do something with obamacare that the republicans are presented in congress. and i read most of them. and i have not seen one of these bills that really and truly what actually -- what actually help me at my grade level. when i look at this and i am seeing that it is so insincere for the republicans to say that they are really and truly representative of me. here is my question to the congressman. can you please tell me one of the bills -- and read us one
item on any one of the bills -- that will say to me as a citizen that is now -- my average salary -- tell mer $30,000 with a family of five, which part of any one of your bills that you have presented that will help me now that i do not have insurance? your for the question. hr 3121. look it up. credit to beax given to every american or american family that will cover the entire cost of a policy. the lower-priced policies. you can get a policy and basically have a tax incentive by that policy -- to buy that policy. this is for every american. you do not have to be a plug by someone. you can just be self-employed. he could just be unemployed.
you could have an individual policy. that is a benefit to every american. hr 3120 one. with regard to the readability of bills, i am a doctor not a lawyer. bills are written in legislative language. i congratulate you for reading through those bills. it is very difficult to understand. host: dfw tweets and -- aca.: we don't accept the in march ofhe vote 2010. no republican voted for it because we think it is bad policy. -- thek a policy estimate that 80 million to 90
million americans will lose the insurance policy they have. tells 90it plan that million americans that the government knows better for you and your family and your business what policy to offer than you do -- we think that is flawed. that is not the way america works. we think you should give people the choice to have the policy, to stay on the policy, not force them into government exchanges. broach the aven chew of contract -- the seventh so manyvoted friday huge issues. this is flawed policy. we would not have proposed the aca as it is. that is the purpose of the legislature. we want to change in legislative ash legislative act. host: democrat, richmond virginia. caller: i have been watching c- span for 20 years.
i watch it every day. this is the first time i have ever called and. this culture -- health care situation is probably one of the most important things i have seen in my life. c-span has the ability and the opportunity to give the american public a clear idea of what is going on by having two people on this.talking about one person that hates it and one person that loves it. we can see were the misgivings are coming from. the representative you have their -- i can't believe you started off by saying positions have not had a pay increase in 10 years. big -- cry big
crocodile tears about that. everything that i see shows that the medical industry, the physicians, hospitals, the pharmaceutical industry, and the medical device industry have been colluding together, operating in a closed system that nobody can look inside of to create their own market, create their own prices and become very, very wealthy in doing that. about theomplaining federal payers being the worst, comparing them to the insurance industry. 10 years after medicare was passed, physician salaries in this country almost tripled. i can't believe anything you are saying. host: i think we got the point. guest: the facts are the facts. the fact is is that medicare and
medicaid pay physicians less than private insurance. i will have to tell you this is not a problem -- the physicians obviously would like inflation adjustments from the government. the problem is that i want you to go and find some patients -- some people on medicare, ask them whether it is becoming more or less difficult to find a physician who is going to take care. i'm not going to apologize for getting paid as a physician. i spent four years in college, four years in medical school, four years after medical school training. when you go to see a physician, i hope that you want the best and the brightest to be taking care of you and your family. the best and the brightest in this country are paid for the investment they have made in their education and their training. i do think it is unfair for the government to set for 10 years to physicians, we are not going to give you even a cost-of- and inflation increase
to your pay. the end result is that physicians are retiring early, they are leaving practice, and they're limiting the number of medicare patients they take care of. in this country, only half of the specialists will see a medicaid patient. that is medicaid, not medicare. some specialties will see a medicaid patient. when the government contracts for every other service and you know the stories about several hundred dollar nuts and bolts and hammers -- when the government contracts for every other service, they pay the market rate. the only thing they do not pay the market rate for is for physician service. they dictate the reimbursement to a physician and the end result is limited access for the patients of america and i will tell you because i personally know -- the best and divide it -- brightest are thinking to weiss about whether to enter the medical field area -- twice about whether to enter the medical field.
host: what about the contention that it is a closed system and we are not privy to the financial matcher nations -- machinations? guest: i will not talk about the health care system in general. we have talked about the lack of transparency. anybody can online and see what medicare pays a physician and what the trend is. the subpart is that for those is for thosed part seniors watching the show -- there are parts of my district, near the ocean and the chesapeake they, seniors retiring their are finding they cannot find a primary care physician whose presstek is -- practice is open to new medicare patients. the government does not pay the cost to turn on the lights to take care of those patients. --t: two final tweets
guest: we are certainly seeing that the medicaid expansion is taking place. one of the surprises is that a large number of those medicaid patients are going to have to be paid for -- coe paid with the state. d with the state. if the only way the system works is to require everyone to have insurance and when the penalty income,$95, 1% of your that is not going to encourage a young person, just starting out who has the choice of pink $250 a month that the other was buy, they-- wouldn't will pay the $200 penalty. that is a rational economic
decision. we did not price the policies low enough to encourage young folks to buy them. host: representative andy harris has been our guest on the washington journal. please come back. we have one more guest coming up. that is sander levin, the ranking member on the ways and means committee. >> here is a poem that comes directly out of my boyhood in detroit. sundays to my father got on early and put his clothes on and
different voices, in different forms and techniques. he was very deliberate about this from the very beginning. but theys write well, write essentially the same column over and over again. determined to make every poll and unique, as unique as it could be. poems, hehistorical writes personal poems, he writes comic poems, ellijay and dramatic poems -- elegiac and dramatic poems. he represents the world of early detroit. detroit in the teens and the 20s of the 20th century. the depression, the war, the aftermath of the war, the life that people lived in the 1950's and the 1960's. theas the chronicler of civil rights movement.
there are so many areas in which he has written beautifully, written capello -- compellingly. i am delighted that there was attention being paid to him at his centennial. >> the life of poet robert hayden as book tv and american history tv look at the history and the literary life of ann arbor, michigan. saturday at noon on c-span 2. >> "washington journal" continues. guest, frequent west -- sander levin is the ranking member on the ways and means committee. a democrat from michigan. how are you voting today on your michigander's -- bill? i am voting against it because it would destroy an effort to provide health care for everybody and to make sure
that premium costs go down. the health care reform bill is already helping to drive down premium increases. more thanto go up 10%. the annual increase in cost care has been going down the last 4-5 years, in part because of health care reform. for everybody, those who have no insurance, health care reform is essential. what upton wants to do is destroy it. host: what do you think of what the president did yesterday? it was necessary. the ball had been fumbled and now we need to pick it up and make it work. essentially he is saying to those insurance companies and to the insurance commissioners, let's make sure that those who market about 5% of the -- those who have policies can keep them next year.
host: congressman levin, a lot of articles in the paper about how insurance companies and insurance commissioners in the states were taken by surprise by yesterday's announcement and they are not sure they will be able to adjust. guest: they should try to make it work. approach was actually available before the president's action. most insurance companies had sent out notices to a number of people, some millions thomas saying they were canceling policies. now we are saying to the insurance companies, provide the same coverage that people have had who want it. we're talking about 10 million people. host: is this an administrative policy change or can it be done administratively or does it need to be done legislatively? host: it can be done administratively. --guest: it can be done
administratively. host: how so? there is thet: discretion. i hope they will take it vantage. they will tell the customers that there are other alternatives available through the website. hopefully it will be working. it has to work -- work much better. iny will be told what is not the present policy if they renew it. they have to be told of other options through the website and what is lacking in the policies they now have. host: where is your district in michigan? guest: suburban detroit. north of detroit. most of it is macomb county. it is also bourbon. host: do you have any idea how may people are uninsured in your district? how many people signed
up for the aca via the website and how many people potentially got dropped from insurance coverage? guest: we don't have those numbers. we know there were substantial numbers in michigan who used the website which is not working well yet. i do know in michigan you had well over one million people who were uninsured, people who went to bed every day without insurance. you had people who had insurance policies that could be canceled by the insurance carriers or not renewed if they had a pre- existing condition. we knew that there was a crisis in the health care system. as the president said, the status quo was not working well. in michigan, over one million people did not have insurance. also for people with pre- existing conditions whose insurance could be canceled or not renewed by the insurance company. that was not workable.
there were no lifetime limits for most of these policies or annual limits. so when people hit a certain limit, they were totally on their own. the market was not working well. there was a decision to do two things. provide medicaid coverage for people below a certain income and also to make sure, for those anve it, that there was opportunity through the private insurance market to get insurance affordable and adequate. it was a combination of medicaid and of using the private insurance structure to make sure millions more were insured. ,hose who say it was socialism essentially what the president did and what we proposed and carried out was a combined more coverage through medicaid and more coverage through the working of private insurance.
having thisre challenge to make the private insurance market work for these millions of people. will the democrats be united in their opposition to the fred upton bill today in the house? in politics are really totally united, but i think the vast majority will vote against upton. we will have a motion to recommit and i think the vast majority of democrats will vote for it. the reason is that the status quo was not working. as i said so many tens of millions had no insurance. millions of people are having insurance policies that did not cover their needs and could be ended by the insurance companies if they so desired, if there was a pre-existing condition. people who have pre-existing conditions who could not get coverage or whose coverage was canceled and it was heartbreaking to hear the
stories. msemember a woman who had and to then had a chronic disease in addition to that enter policy was canceled and she had no place to turn. now people will have a place to turn. host: politically, have the democrats been hurt by what has been going on with the aca website and the announcement the president made yesterday? yes.: the important thing is not the politics of it. i think we know there are ads and flows in politics. and flows and politics. politics. the website is improving. in the end, the determination will be politically whether this health care, this experiment, having more people covered, will work. the status quo was not
acceptable for millions who had no insurance and for millions whose insurance was at the whim of the insurance company. host: an article this morning in "politico." darkens taxeality rewrite outlook." talking about the potential for tax reform. before you answer that, i want to add this in. there was a recent article in "roll call perko it was a battle -- "roll call." first of all, on tax be on ait had to bipartisan basis from the beginning. we started that way, dave campbell and myself. , essentially the dave
camp and the republicans decided to go their own way. that is not working. you cannot have tax reform without bipartisan. in terms of the ways and means committee and what the republicans did, i said it went beyond what was the tradition ,ithin our committee because for example, the dave camp and the republicans subpoenaed marilyn tavener, saying you must come this next week with the figures through the website and she said, the following week those will be produced. it was a misuse of subpoena ourr and was not within bipartisan tradition of ways and means. host: is tax reform dead? guest: i think it is on life support for this year. said -- he set a goal or a target -- 25% for
individuals -- 25% for corporations, without indicating how when the world who would ever get there. the joint task committee said to get up to 28% for corporate, you had to abolish all of the abolishns, you had to all of the provisions that related to supported manufacturing. individual, to get down to 25%, you would have had to eliminate all of the tax policies, charitable contributions, mortgage interest , state and local taxes, and the provision for tax-free bonds, state and local. you would've had to abolish all of them to get under 25%. dave camp and the republicans never said how when the world they would ever get 25%. it was essentially kind of a slogan and now they are having aouble making that slogan
reality. in that respect, the ball was in their court and i think talking about fumbling -- they fumbled. host: senator levin is our guest. a longtime democratic congressman from michigan. ranking member of the ways and means committee. greg is in cleveland, ohio. republican. caller: hi there. guest: nice to talk to and ohio and. the republicans did bring up their ideas. they said that you could try to buy insurance across state lines, co-op with companies in the same companies -- industry to buy insurance. court routen have -- tort reform. that was an idea thrown out by
your republican colleagues. i think we concentrated just on the people who did not have insurance, instead of looking at the whole health care industry. the other thing was that nancy pelosi even said that you had to pass the bill in order to see what was inside it. harry reid changed the rules in the senate to pass this with 51 votes instead of what is traditionally the 60 votes that you would need to pass something like this. it not disingenuous to say that the republicans did not you comeideas and that of the democratic party, own this debacle? guest: there was never a comprehensive republican insurance -- health insurance reform bill. there were tiny pieces. scored, it was said that it would not be centrally address the problem of over 50
million people without insurance in this country. having premiums go up and up. best --tate lines was a at best a small petalia to have -- palliative. we are the only industrial nation in the world which has 50 billion -- 50 million people without insurance. we are the only one. we had to do something. essentially, we came up -- i was on one of the committees that looked at this bill. we spent hours and hours and hours going through every significant provision. it turns out it is not working well yet. if the website can get into operation better, we're going to see more and more people sign up.
people1.5 million covered by being designated to be eligible determinations. wille 500,000 people, they be in medicaid or they will be in the private insurance market. one million others are shopping on a website. republicans never came up with an alternative that began to address the problem. never. and so we did. we did. the status quo is not working. when they needed health care, they went into hospitals and emergency rooms and we paid for through our insurance policies. we had to do something better. we tried during the clinton years. that did not work well.
now we have an insurance health reform bill and we need to make it work. we are not trying to destroy it. host: fayetteville, north carolina. democrats line. this is the first time i have called and -- in. i am calling in support of the aca. i had to go on the individual market, over $500 per month. but it was not worth the paper it was written on. the only thing it covered was my medicine and that is why i took it. i pray that i would not get seriously sick or injured that i had gone to the hospital.
i would have been in bankruptcy. fortunately for me, i didn't. anybody who knows these policies -- 30% of them are canceled after six months. 60% are canceled after one year. my comment to senator levin -- why don't they get support for this president as strongly as the republicans are standing in opposition to this? i see the democrats always on the news -- i see the republicans always on the news talking about this is going to destroy the country. you all should stand and support and be in there
support of this man 24 hours a day if you can. not scattering like roaches when the light is turned on. stand behind this man. host: thank you very much. the president took a bold step that needed to be taken and so do democrats do essentially make sure that everybody could have overtime coverage for health insurance like is true and other industrial nations. to make sure we got control of health care costs -- the status quo was no longer acceptable. and we wille steps continue to work to make it work. the republicans are working to make sure it does not work. when we passed the prescription medicine bill some years ago, i opposed the bill that the republicans passed.
but then i went out and worked to make it work, i sent out newsletters to constituents. i said i voted against this bill, but we needed to have prescription medicine coverage to seniors and i am not going to work to make this bill work and it is now working rather well. we need to do the same with health care reform. we need to alter it to work to make it work. instead the upton bill would destroy health care reform. they would say that everybody, not only those who have policies could renew them. anybody who wanted that kind of a very inferior policy could now essentially take advantage of it. that would destroy the insurance market. it would destroy the private insurance reforms that were necessary. health care reform was built in
part on medicaid being more available to those below a certain income and have private insurance available to millions of people. that is what we are trying to do. we should work together instead of the upton bill that would destroy it. louisville, kentucky. republican line. yes, good morning. i have two quick points. we have beencky touted as being -- as having a successful start to this health care bill. however, the majority of our inollees have enrolled medicaid and that is important in our state because our pension system is in crisis. we cannot afford our pensions as they stand now.
in three years, when our burden in this new medicaid enrollment is 10%, i have no idea how our state will afford it. my second point is a personal account. we are small business owners. this morning, we're having a meeting in our office with all of the employees to inform them that we will -- that we are dropping all of their health care. they will go to the exchange. we feel very, very badly about doing this. we have provided their health care for 30 years. and now i hope that they will be premiums andd the the co-pays that are coming down the pipe for them. byproduct of this bill and they will be informed by us that this is not our
decision, but this decision has been forced upon us because we can no longer afford to carry them. host: how many employees? a construction business. it goes up and down anywhere from 20-50. providing the be subsidy for these folks on the exchanges? caller: i do not believe we will be able to do that. we have had to insurance brokers who have come in to talk to us about this. they will be present at the meeting to explain why this has occurred and quite honestly there are people there who cannot even read and write. they have been very appreciative of the fact that this is not -- this has not had to have been one of their worries. now they have to go and talk to
navigators and i'm not really sure that this is something that they wanted to take on. now they're going to be forced to do it. know whatould like to kind of insurance to now had. how much coverage did they have and how much were they paying? a1ler: they had excellent, coverage and there were many years when their coverage was better than ours. we never had dental insurance personally, but we provided our employees with dental insurance. most of our employees are men. their men beyond the years where they would be having children. i'm sure they are not going to be having delighted with her now paying more and they are getting maternity coverage and they will be able to get reduced price
contraceptives. it is not practical. guest: let me comment if i might. first of all, kentucky is one of the states that started to take this on and i sent -- and not simply have the federal government be the one who set up the exchange. i think so far the evidence is in kentucky, to its credit, that health care reform is beginning to work quite well. i think that is the first point. you have a number of people on medicaid. you have are a number of people going onto the private insurance market. as the website works better, more and more will be able to do that. secondly, as too small business. if you're under 50 employees, there is no requirement that you have insurance at all. -- not sure what your cases case is.
they will be able to go into the private market, depending on how much they are paid, they may be able to receive tax credits. we will see if the market works. fororked to some extent your employees, because you bought private insurance and now for them, they will go into a private insurance market and hopefully it will work. competition should work. the history so far is that in the states that have had these state exchanges, insurance rates have come in lower than expected. it is working better than was predict it in terms of the insurance rates. your employees will go into -- if you don't want to cover them -- they will go into the website, they will go into the private insurance market -- some of the may have access to tax credits. insurance as to
what will be covered. there is a minimum standard that is set in health care reform. you mentioned one part of it, maternity coverage. there is also mental health coverage. so many people don't have coverage now. also, the policies that people had through you, they could be canceled by the insurance companies at any point if there was a pre-existing condition. no longer will that be true. there will be annual limits. there will be lifetime limits that are essentially built in. those employees, i wish you could continue to cover them, if they go into the market, they will be able to shop in a competitive insurance market. host: any response? stated, the kentucky market appears to be working well initially on the surface.
the next three years -- as our state assumes 10% of the cost in the expanded medicaid, i have no idea where we will get the money. we have a pension crisis in our state. this is going to add to that. like --er two, we would it is not that we don't want to cover our employees -- it is not economically feasible. would you talk about the fact that they would have mental health coverage were drug coverage, let me tell you -- our policies had both of those. we had employees who had had drug problems. we treated them well. guest: how much of a premium did they have to pick up? was it -- did they have to pick up a substantial portion? caller: no they did not. guest: you paid 100% of their
insurance? we did.at some points for people who had pre-existing conditions, which we did have several -- we had somebody with a transplant, we bought separate coverage because -- and put them in a separate pool because they were more expensive to cover. but we cover them. what we have is been forced to do. it is either this or nobody has a job. host: thank you very much for your time, mary. i think most people in small business are now going to be able to shop and a market which will be more feasible for them. we essentially said to small business people, they do not -- if they have under 50 employees -- have to cover. however, i think that with
competition, i think we have to believe that it will work. i think everybody has to understand. i don't know the exact figure in kentucky. hundreds of thousands i'm sure in kentucky had no insurance whatsoever. it was over one million in michigan. we had to change that. essentially, in kentucky as well as michigan as well as other states, people without insurance essentially went to emergency they had only coverage through that. it was expensive. there was no preventive care. all the rest of us paid essentially for they're going to emergency room's instead of having health-care coverage. host: sheila is a democrat in chicago. ok, congressman levin. i hope you will stick with this president. it is amazing. before the website was launched, was thecould hear
republicans telling us that the american people don't want this. the american people don't want this. it is amazing come a when it first opened up, i think close to 20 million people tried to get on the website. that was a lie right there. don't tell us what we want and what we don't want. the same guys, i heard one. sean duffy. he was talking about -- she had obamacare. if he can get obamacare and you all can get insurance, why did they tell us that we don't want it? please. stick with this president. you are doing something that is right for this country. don't let these republicans who have no idea -- and they don't even want to feed the people. they don't want to give the people minimum wage. white is it all of a sudden they so concerned about these insurance policies? they are not concerned. if they are trying to scare you all to being submissive. when you all stood with each
other during the shutdown, you see other backed off? stand up to these republicans because they are not for the american people. keep doing what god sent you all to do. host: got the point. congressman? we put together an effort at long last to make sure that insurance was available for everybody. and also that we could get control of health care costs. so the people would not be canceled because of a pre- existing condition. able tole would not be simply have to go to the emergency room for their care. they had no preventive care. people died because there was no preventive care. we are changing that. we intend to stick with it. , as the was fumbled president said, in the implementation. there were problems with
implementation with all previous experiments. and now on the ball is fumbled, the question is, do we all pick it up and go together to try to make it work? or do we essentially kick at what was passed? what the republicans are doing is kicking at it and trying to bring it down instead of working to try to make it run and work. we are going to keep that this. the president is. there were problems. we will address them. we are going to work hard to address them. that is our obligation to the american people. countryus quo in this -- that of health care status quo was simply unacceptable. unacceptable. last line in the "wall street journal" editorial --
in the last line in the "washington post" -- guest: all of that is really off the mark. we faced a crisis in health care in this country. i met many many people who had no health care coverage or one cobra who said they had that they could not afford when they were laid off. we cannot continue this way. in canada and other countries, they have a single-payer system. we essentially said that we
would experiment with a combination -- more people under medicaid and millions of people under private insurance. help those who could not afford private insurance to help them get it you are not eligible for medicaid. this was an experiment, a very american experiment to see if we could combine forces to make it work. host: sander levin has been our guest. thank you. the house of representatives. copal church, alexandria, irginia. the chair lays before the house a communication. the clerk: the speaker's rooms, washington, d.c., november 15, 2013, i hereby appoint the honorable steve